With so many of us working at home now, juggling so many different roles being productive in our our work is more important than ever.
Have you ever been doing a task and found yourself at its completion wondering how it got done? During the challenge you felt a sense of joy, peace and power and the very act of working made you feel happy.
This, my friends, is what we call flow state and is when we are fully immersed in an activity allowing our brain off the circular chatter that hides the path to answers to our problems. The concept was first introduced by psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (watch his TEDtalk here).
I liken Flow State to a big eraser that sweeps away the disorganized and confusing scribbles on the blackboard of my mind making room for the creative and productive ideas to appear. Working at home can be frustrating at the best of times so when we do put our head down we want to make that time as productive and rewarding as possible.
How do we get into flow state?
- Exercise first. CrossFit is such a great way to clear the mind. You are told what to do, when to do it and it is hard. This requires full focus and gives your brain a break from thinking. .
- Choose an important task and get that done first. When we are in flow state we want to maximize that time by doing the work that is the hardest as that when the brain is the most productive and creative.
- Choose your most productive time of the day to work. For some that might be the early morning and for others it may be late night. We all have an internal clock that defines when our brain functions the best.
- Eliminate distractions. Turn off the notifications on your phone, wear noise cancelling ear phones, close down your email and social media pages on your computer. Clean off your desk and tidy your work area. You want a clean blackboard to work with not one that others are adding distracting notes too.
- Use the Pomodoro technique. Set a timer for 25 minutes and work on a task and then take a 5 min break and do this until the task is completed. For every four 25 minute intervals you work, add another 5 minutes to your rest.
- Have a balanced meal of nuts, seeds, vegetables and lean meat prior to working. Hunger will make flow state impossible.
Hope this helps you have a better day and let me know if you have questions as I would love to help!